For a long time, the only Chromebook to respond when you talked to it was Google’s own expensive Pixelbook or Pixel Slate. Now that feature is filtering down to almost every other Chromebook with the release of Chrome OS 77.
Like with other devices, the easiest way to wake Google Assistant is to simply say “Hey Google”, but you can also click the Assistant logo in Chrome OS’s launcher. From there, it’s pretty similar to the Google Assistant you know on your phone or smart speaker, and you’re able to ask questions, set reminders, play music, control smart home devices and, of course, hear jokes.
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Introducing the new version of Chrome OS, the company explained that Assistant would work on “most Chromebooks”, but emphasised that this was a gradual roll out. “Friendly Reminder: This update will be progressively rolling out over the coming days,” the post reads. “Your device may not immediately be eligible for this update.”
Google Assistant isn’t the only new addition in Chrome OS 77. The company now has new media notifications to help you track down where audio is coming from, and to let you manage media in “one convenient place”.
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Family Link also makes its debut on Chromebook, and like the Android version, lets parents set screen-time limits for children and teens. “It’s now easier for parents to add bonus time within the Family Link app when screen time is almost over – without changing the daily limit or bedtime schedule,” Google explains.
These features debut alongside the introduction of virtual desktops, an easy way to send pages to other devices via the browser and a battery-saving measure that’ll shut down devices after three days of standby.
What do you think of the improvements for Chrome OS 77? Let us know on Twitter: @TrustedReviews.